Can Tonsils Grow Back?: Symptoms And Treatment

Can Tonsils Grow Back Symptoms And Treatment

If you are here to know can tonsils grow back after being removed, we suppose that either you have tonsillitis or have already undergone tonsillectomy.

Tonsillectomy is a medical procedure that removes tonsils (1). Usually, tonsils grow back when residual tissue is left behind after the procedure regenerates. While the regrowth is typically partial, it’s a testament to the resilience of our body’s tissues.

Let’s find out what tonsils are, what causes their regrowth, whether tonsil regrowth is dangerous, and how we can treat them.

What are Tonsils?


Tonsils are the two lymph nodes on each side of the throat. They work as a defense mechanism and help prevent the body from getting an infection. When an infection develops on the tonsils, it is called tonsillitis (2). It can happen at any age and is a common childhood illness.

Children from preschool age through their mid-teens are more likely to be diagnosed with tonsillitis with the following telltale signs-

  • sore and swollen throat
  • discomfort
  • fever

The pathogens that cause tonsillitis are easily transmissible, and the issue can be triggered by various viruses and bacteria. One of the common causes of tonsillitis is the Streptococcal bacteria (3).

If tonsillitis caused by strep throat is left untreated, it can lead to severe complications, highlighting the importance of timely medical intervention and tonsillectomy.

If you have undergone this procedure, it is possible that your tonsils will grow back. Usually, it happens only when a tissue is left behind during the tonsil removal procedure, allowing it to regenerate over time.

What Are The Symptoms Of Tonsil Regrowth?

symptoms of tonsil regrowth

One of the most common symptoms of tonsil regrowth is the occurrence of bumps where there were tonsils. If you are witnessing small bumps at the same location, the chances are tonsils regrowing.

Even though the tonsils regrowth does not cause any problems, they can become swollen as a result of infection, just like the old tonsils. Often, people who are prone to tonsillitis suffer from the issue.

Among young children, tonsil regrowth may show additional symptoms such as

  • increased irritability
  • poor appetite
  • excessive drooling

Sore Throat after Removing Tonsils

Sore throat is one of the common symptoms of tonsillitis. However, once you have removed tonsils, there will be fewer chances of infections that cause sore throat.

According to a study (4), around 95 percent of people said that they rarely get sore throat or throat infections after tonsillectomy. It means that their tonsils do not regrow after being removed. And, even if they have grown, the growth was rudimentary, leaving little risk of a throat infection on the tonsils.

Children are more susceptible to getting sore throat even after tonsil removal due to other reasons such as

  • cold
  • smoke
  • allergy
  • dry air

All these can cause sore throat even after the child lacks tonsils.

Strep Throat After Removing Tonsils

Once you have got your tonsils removed with tonsillectomy, the chances of developing strep throat decrease considerably. Bacteria that cause strep throat, streptococcus attacks tonsils and develops symptoms like-

  • sudden sore throat
  • painful swallowing
  • high fever

However, as there are no tonsils anymore, the probability of strep throat also decreases.

Here, it is interesting to note that tonsils are not required by our body. Even though they act as a defence mechanism and prevent infections from entering, the body can still survive without them.

So, even if you have no tonsils, there is nothing to worry about!

Who Is at Increased Risk of Tonsil Regrowth?

Even though the chances of tonsil regrowth are rare, some people are more prone to getting them in the following cases (5)-

  • tonsils removed at a very young age
  • the doctor has performed tonsillotomy (removal of tonsils and leaving a thin layer of tissue) instead of tonsillectomy
  • the body is prone to allergies and infections
  • history of acute tonsilitis

How To Treat Tonsil Regrowth?

In some cases, tonsils may regrow, if not completely, then partially. Usually, tonsil regrowth doesn’t require any medical attention.

However, if you are experiencing symptoms such as sore throat, infection, or swelling, the doctor may prescribe antibiotics. If the symptoms don’t subside with antibiotics and keep getting severe, the doctor may recommend another surgery.


Can tonsils grow back after being removed? Probably, no.

However, in certain cases, such as tonsil removal at a young age, it increases the chances of regrowth. Most of the time, regrowth isn’t something to worry about, but you should consult your doctor if it happens or causes any serious issues.


  1. Medline Plus – Tonsillectomy
  2. Medline Plus – Tonsillitis
  3. National Library Of Medicine – Streptococcus
  4. National Library Of Medicine – On the pathogenesis of duchenne muscular dystrophy
  5. National Library Of Medicine – [Education of the educators; priority problems, why? Introduction]

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